Heavy metal pollution in China: Origin, pattern and control
- Shuiping ChengAffiliated withState Key Lab of Freshwater Ecology and Biotechnology, Institute of Hydrobiology, The Chinese Academy of SciencesInstitute of Botany, University of Cologne Email author
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Goal, Scope and Background
Heavy metal is among one of the pollutants, which cause severe threats to humans and the environment in China. The aim of the present review is to make information on the source of heavy metal pollution, distribution of heavy metals in the environment, and measures of pollution control accessible internationally, which are mostly published in Chinese.
Information from scientific journals, university journals and governmental releases are compiled focusing mainly on Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn. Partly Al, As, Cr, Fe, Hg, Mn and Ni are included also in part as well.
Results and Discussion
In soil, the average contents of Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn are 0.097, 22.6, 26.0 and 74.2 mg/kg, respectively. In the water of the Yangtze River Basin, the concentrations of Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn are 0.080, 7.91,15.7 and 18.7 ug/L, respectively. In reference to human activities, the heavy metal pollution comes from three sources: industrial emission, wastewater and solid waste. The environment such as soil, water and air were polluted by heavy metals in some cases. The contents of Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn even reach 3.16, 99.3, 84.1 and 147 mg/kg, respectively, in the soils of a wastewater irrigation zone. These contaminants pollute drinking water and food, and threaten human health. Some diseases resulting from pollution of geological and environmental origin, were observed with long-term and non-reversible effects.
In China, the geological background level of heavy metal is low, but with the activity of humans, soil, water, air, and plants are polluted by heavy metals in some cases and even affect human health through the food chain.
Recommendations and Outlook
To remediate and improve environmental quality is a long strategy for the polluted area to keep humans and animals healthy. Phytoremediation would be an effective technique to remediate the heavy metal pollutions.
KeywordsCd Cu emission food chain health Pb phytoremediation waste fertilization wastewater irrigation Zn
- Heavy metal pollution in China: Origin, pattern and control
Environmental Science and Pollution Research
Volume 10, Issue 3 , pp 192-198
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- food chain
- waste fertilization
- wastewater irrigation
- Industry Sectors
- Shuiping Cheng (1) (2)
- Author Affiliations
- 1. State Key Lab of Freshwater Ecology and Biotechnology, Institute of Hydrobiology, The Chinese Academy of Sciences, 430072, Wuhan, P.R. China
- 2. Institute of Botany, University of Cologne, Gyrhofstrasse 15, D-50931, Koeln, Germany